Pain Pump & Postarthroscopic Glenohumeral Chondrolysis (PAGCL)

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Pain Pump use has been linked to a debilitating condition known as PAGCL (Postarthroscopic Glenohumeral Chondrolysis)

What is Postarthroscopic Glenohumeral Chondrolysis?

Postarthroscopic Glenohumeral Chondrolysis destroys cartilage of the glenohumeral joint, the joint that joins the arm and shoulder. The head of the arm bone, which connects to the joint, is covered in articular cartilage, which allows the shoulder joint to move smoothly. If this cartilage is damaged or destroyed, the shoulder cannot move easily resulting in significant pain and reduced range of motion.

PAGCL Symptoms

A 2007 study published in the American Journal of Sports Medicine reported that up to 63 percent of the patients who receive shoulder pain pump implants are at risk of developing postarthroscopic glenohumeral chondrolysis.

Typically, pain pump patients who develop PAGCL will start developing some combination of the following symptoms within three to five months of their surgery:

  • a sensation of clicking, popping and/or grinding in the shoulder joint
  • decreased range of motion in the shoulder
  • shoulder pain, either at rest or with movement
  • stiffness and/or weakness in the shoulder

PAGCL & Pain Pump Implants

In 2006, researchers at the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons presented evidence that shoulder pain pumps were known to cause PAGCL. Ironically, the very device implanted to relieve patient’s shoulder injuries is now known to intensify them when these pumps cause PAGCL. Shoulder pain pump patients who have developed PAGCL after using this medical device should:

  • seek medical attention to prevent further damage to their health
  • consult with an experienced attorney to learn more about their legal rights and entitlements
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